TOP TEN TUESDAY: Ten books I rated too highly

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Ten books I rated too highly

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.

I’m sorry for disappearing for a few weeks! The past few Top Ten Tuesday topics haven’t been inspiring to me, but I’ve also been having a difficult mental health spell and trying to concentrate on blogging has not been happening. I’m hoping to at least participate in Top Ten Tuesday for the entirety of June, because I like all of the topics listed for the upcoming weeks, but don’t be surprised if these are the only posts you get from me each week for a little bit longer.

This week’s topic is a freebie topic, so I decided to talk about some books I rated too highly. I’m sure we’ve all done the same; impulse rated a book a four or a five star, and looked at it a couple of years later and wondered what our past self was thinking. I was scrolling through my Goodreads the other day and noticed a few books which I’d rated too highly, and I’ve managed to round it up to ten!

Here we go…

Don’t Tell by Karen Rose

In all honesty, I don’t know if this is the book I meant to put on this list. According to Goodreads I’ve only read this one book by Karen Rose, but I could have sworn that I’d read Silent Scream (and didn’t enjoy it all that much). I was quite surprised to see a completely different Karen Rose book on my Goodreads read list with a 5 star rating, but (as you’ll see later on in this post) apparently I’m not that great at remembering all of the books I’ve read.

My main problem with Karen Rose’s novel(s?) are issues with continuity/proofreading. Although I don’t normally count those errors in my ratings, Karen Rose’s stories are told with days, dates and timestamps at the beginning of each chapter, allowing the reader to follow the action closely. The problem with this is that if there is an error – Wednesday the 13th becoming Thursday the 13th, for example – it’s really bloody obvious and looks lazy. I’m not sure whether more of Karen Rose’s novels have the same mistakes, but you can tell how annoying I found it based off of the fact that the rest of this story so memorable that I can’t remember whether this was even the book I read! Oops…

Fallen Angel by Heather Terrell

Fallen Angel is the first book in a duology of the same name. I’ve actually read Fallen Angel twice, having reread it before the release of the sequel, Eternity, and I cannot remember anything about it. Apparently the main characters were called Ellie and Michael, which is… good for them, I guess? Judging from the popular reviews on Goodreads, this was a very derivative YA paranormal romance and I don’t think I’d be able to get through it if I tried to reread it now, let alone give it 5 stars.

Jonas by Eden Maguire

Retrospectively, Jonas deserves a couple of stars at the very most, but when I read the first book in the Beautiful Dead series I had no idea what a shambles the rest of the quartet was going to turn out to be. The concept of the Beautiful Dead series is a great one – a girl’s boyfriend dies, and she stumbles upon a gang of ghosts (including her boyfriend) who need their deaths to be solved so that they can pass to the other side. The main character is struggling to come to terms with the fact that she’s going to end up losing her boyfriend forever when she helps solve his death, so she solves the mysteries of three other teenaged ghosts along the way.

Unfortunately, that means that you basically read the same story four times. Ghost gets introduced, ghost shares information with main character, main character does some investigating, gets herself into MORTAL PERIL, escapes mortal peril and SAVES THE DAY, ghost passes to the other side, rinse and repeat. For some godforsaken reason I forced myself to finish this series, and I hated it. Jonas deserves a lower rating just because of the state of the sequels.

Nothing Tastes as Good by Claire Hennessy

I discussed Claire Hennessy’s problematic behaviour in a post about judging books by their authors over three years ago now, which makes it disappointing but not surprising that she’s still up to the same old shenanigans. I’m starting to think that 5 stars might have been too generous for Nothing Tastes as Good, even though I do still have fond memories of the novel and it helped me during a dark period of my life.

Picture Perfect by Jodi Picoult

I gave Picture Perfect 5 stars, and I can’t remember reading it. I was certain I’d only read one novel by Jodi Picoult – Sing You Home, which deserved the 5 stars I gave it – but apparently I’ve read Picture Perfect as well. Based off of the fact that I can’t remember it at all, it didn’t deserve such a high rating.

The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

I changed my rating of The Queen of Nothing back in February, because I don’t know what I was thinking when I gave this book 4 stars. Actually, I do know what I was thinking: Ezra was only three weeks old when I read it, so I was completely blissed out on pregnancy hormones and being overly generous. Upon reflection, I hated this book. I dropped it down to 2 stars, but sometimes I even think that’s too high!

I know I’m in the minority here, but I wasn’t satisfied at all by this novel. My satisfaction has decreased since reading How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories as well, because it feels like the short stories in that collection could have easily been incorporated into the main bulk of the Folk of the Air series to flesh things out a bit more. Instead, The Queen of Nothing is the shortest novel in the trilogy, and it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Sometimes I’m tempted to reread these just to see if I wasn’t being too generous in my post-birth haze, but it won’t be happening any time soon.

Unbelievable, Wanted and Twisted by Sara Shepard

A triple whammy! According to my Goodreads page, I stupidly decided to give 5 star ratings to these three books in the Pretty Little Liars series. I can’t remember what happened in any of the specific installments, but I can remember that the writing wasn’t that great. With four very similar viewpoints in the books, I only found these easy to read because I was attached to the characters from watching the TV show. I wonder if that was the main reason that these books earned 5 star ratings in past me’s mind.

My overwhelming memories of this series are ones of frustration and irritation – a new background character would appear at the start of each book and would be a distant memory by the end of that novel, and the situations the girls found themselves in grew ever more contrived – so I don’t think this is a series which I’ll ever reread (or finish). I’m leaving my 5 star ratings on those books for now, but I will probably drop them down eventually.

The Woman in Black by Susan Hill

I didn’t like The Woman in Black. I found it predictable, slow, and as far from scary as a horror novel could be. I thought I’d given it a 3 star rating, but when I looked on Goodreads I had rated it 5 stars.


I’m guessing it’s because I watched the play while reading the book. The play was dreadful (I literally fell asleep while the people around me were screaming at the jump scares!) so I think it tricked me into thinking I was enjoying the book, when in reality I was not. I’ve retrospectively changed my Goodreads rating for this one, because it’s solidly a 3 star in my mind.

And there you have it: ten books which I rated far too highly. What was past Alyce thinking?!

Are there any books that you think you rated too highly? Feel free to also link your Top Ten Tuesday freebie posts down in the comments so I can see what you did with this week’s topic!

See you soon,